Writer's Guide
I apologize if reading the title triggered your gag
reflex. I know that a lot of people, especially those
too young to remember the late eighties, only know Kevin
Costner as the creepy old guy from
Rumor Has It, or the
star of the inexplicable and seemingly interminable
Waterworld and Postman marathons on TBS. But despite
these rather embarrassing associations, I have to
confess that once, a long time ago, I was madly in love
with Kevin Costner.

Before I tell you how Kevin captured my heart, I think
you need to know something important about me. Here it
is: I love baseball. I don't mean that I kit myself out
in a cleavage bearing tee-shirt and troll the local
sports bar while a ball game happens to flicker behind
me on a flatscreen. No, I mean I LOVE baseball. I love
the grass and the ball park, the popcorn and warm beer.
I love the sweet smack a wooden bat makes when it
connects with a fastball over the plate. I love the
players, their spitting, and crotch grabbing, and
general manliness. I love ground balls and great
sweeping flies to right. I. Love. Baseball. Every summer
my boyfriend springs for the MLB Extra Innings cable
package as a gift to me, though he knows full well that
it means many evenings spent listening to me groan,
scream, and cheer as my beloved Red Sox battle the
Stankees--um, I mean Yankees. (Note: my boyfriend
rocks.) I am a certified baseball junkie. And this is
how I found Kevin Costner.

I was twelve when
Bull Durham came out. It was 1988, and
like many other things I discovered that year (lipstick,
Cosmo, my father's wallet) an unbreakable bond was
formed. I was young, impressionable and, like many girls
of that age, my love life consisted mostly of imagining
how I'd nurture a gloomy, misunderstood loner out of his
funk with my loveliness and formidable--yet soft and
sweet--girly powers. The broken, brooding, quietly
intelligent Crash Davis, therefore, was my dream man. He
played ball and cared about his teammates. He sparred
with Susan Sarandon's Annie like an everyman-poet. He
taught the brick-brained "Nuke" LaLoosh to trust his
talent. In short, he was lovely. Oh, and did I mention
smoking hot?

Field of Dreams came out the next year. It was an ode to
baseball, dreams, and, well, corn. Ray Kinsella was
heartbreakingly damaged, a beautifully drawn character
who followed his heart instead of his better judgment
and ended up creating a portal by which Shoeless Joe
Jackson could play ball again. Are you kidding me? I
cried like a baby, and Kevin was my hero.

Of course, now I realize that I was really in love with
Ron Shelton and W.P. Kinsella, the writers of those two
amazing films. At the time, though, it was Kevin who
drew me in and held me there, and he held me right into
the nineties playing that paragon of misunderstood
loners, Robin Hood. But I suppose, like so many other
infatuations of my early teen years (perms, tracksuits,
blue mascara) it was not meant to last.

It was
The Bodyguard that began Kevin's sharp decline in
my estimation.
Waterworld was its death knell, and The
its epitaph. But it wasn't just the movies. In
the mid-nineties, I became as interested in the film
industry as film watching. I discovered that Kevin
Costner had developed a not uncommon acting affliction
known as GES, Ginormous Ego Syndrome. GES is
characterized by an innate ability to choose good roles
and then destroy them by rewriting your own dialogue
and/or directing yourself. I found out that Kevin's
downward spiral was his own doing, and precipitated by a
very un-sexy hunger for fame and self-aggrandizement.
Kevin broke my heart.

I suppose it's possible that I really only like Kevin in
a baseball uniform (or tights), because I had a brief
flash of hope when he made
For Love of the Game in 1999,
a not too terrible movie about an aging pitcher's
personal struggles and a perfect game. Or perhaps it's
that as Kevin grew older I found myself falling for
fantasy boys my own age. It's tough to know for sure.
All I do know for certain is that I don't love Kevin
Costner anymore. But if he's in another baseball movie
I'll be the first in line.                      -- Emily

AN UPDATE: The afore mentioned awesome boyfriend is now
my awesome husband.  But, sadly, since having a baby I
don't have time for the MLB package.  I can barely keep
up with the games that air free on ESPN.  And...I'm
still waiting for that new Kevin Costner baseball movie.

ALSO: As an aside, below the list of Kevin Costner
movies listed below I'm adding Sarah & Emily's list of
the ten greatest baseball movies of all time.  You know,
in case October rolls around and your team didn't make
the playoffs.
Bull Durham (1988)
Field of Dreams (1989)
The Bodyguard (1992)
Rumor Has It (2005)
Waterworld (1995)
The Postman (1997)
For Love of the Game (1999)
The Bodyguard (1992)
Field of Dreams
Rumor Has It...
The Postman
For Love of the Game
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991)
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (Extended Version)
Please note:  All films are listed in the order of our love for them, not
by cinematic excellence.
Field of Dreams (1989)
Field of Dreams
Bull Durham (1988)
The Natural (1984)
The Pride of the
Moneyball (2011)
Major League (1989)
Fever Pitch (2005)
A League of Their Own
Eight Men Out (1988)
The Bad News Bears   
Honorable Mention:
Damn Yankees (1958)
The Rookie (2002)
Eight Men Out
The Bad News Bears
Fever Pitch (2005)
A League of Their Own
Major League
The Natural
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